After a regime change in 14thcentury Persia, Ghia, along with his wife and children flee to Qandahar. There he meets a merchant heading to India. When they arrive, the merchant introduces Ghia to Emperor Akbar who soon employs him. Ghia believes his good fortune is due to his youngest daughter, Mehunnisa. At age eight, she first glimpses at Akbar’s son, Prince Salim at his wedding when her ambitions stir.
Once Sam completes a rescue mission in Burma during 1942, he heads to Rudrakot after a plea from his mother back in Seattle, to find out what happened to his brother. In Rudrokot, he boards with the local Tamil political agent where he is drawn to Mila, the agent’s daughter who is expected to marry the state’s prince. Battling the loss of his brother, his growing love for Mila, a wound from his time in Burma, and the prejudice the British and Indians hold against mixed relationships, Sam discovers he cannot win all he desires.
A cast of characters in Annawadi slums near Mumbai’s airport are hopeful when India’s economy starts to bloom. Some are metal thieves, others collect recyclable garbage, but when their day is done, they live in close proximity to everyone so that there are few secrets.
This is a must read with the focus on a Muslim family striving for a better life. It reads like fiction, but was actually the author’s observations and research during her three years living in Mumbai.
This is a fascinating biography of Anna Leonowens who pretended to be British, covering up her past, even from her children, to become the nanny to the King of Siam’s children; travel the world; then settle in Canada to raise her family during the Victorian era when other women stayed at home. Continue reading “Susan Morgan”s — Bombay Anna *****”
What happens when you lose the most precious person in your life — a daughter? This is the agonizing dilemma Sripathi, living in India, finds himself in when he learns of his daughter and her husband’s death in Canada. Soon their daughter, Nandana arrives and Sripathi has to come to terms with his loss. Continue reading “Anita Rau Badami’s — Hero’s Walk *****”
This is the story of how Madhu, a hijra, survives in Mumbai’s notorious red-light district. Madhu is too old for prostitution, so begs on the street until called for a special job when the parcel arrives. Continue reading “Anosh Irani’s — The Parcel *****”
Nariman, the aging patriarch of a Parsi family, is shuffled from one family household to another as his ability to care for himself deteriorates. Mistry takes us on a journey through the lives of this Bombay family that is both sad and often funny. Continue reading “Rohinton Mistry’s — Family Matters *****”